A review, and some resolutions

This post originally appeared on Ben’s old blog, Running From the Physio.

It’s that time of the year when the television is full of rubbish 2013 review programmes. It turns out that you can’t get away from them online either! Hopefully this won’t be too in-depth, but instead just a quick look back at 2013, and an opportunity to set some targets for 2014.

So to start with, I think it would be best to clarify what my goals for last year were:

  1. Run 365 miles in total across the year
  2. Run a sub-50 minute 10 km race
  3. Run a half-marathon

In essence, the first goal was meant to make sure that I got out and trained enough to give me a good chance at the other two, and to turn my running hobby from a casual past-time to a habit. The second was a very achievable goal, but one that I narrowly missed out on during the 2012 Cardiff 10 km, which I finished in 50:43.

The year began poorly; I was carrying a knee injury that I had sustained in October the year before, and was undergoing physiotherapy, which meant that I didn’t run at all in January. My first run of the year was on 4 February, when I managed the gargantuan effort of 1.22 miles – on the treadmill with my physio! That said, I managed to get out reasonably regularly throughout February, and built up the distance, though it was the end of March before I ran 4 miles in one go. By the end of June, half-way through the year, I had only run about 73 miles, putting me a long way behind my goal.

I completed the Wellington 10 km race in the middle of July, on what was quite possibly the hottest day of the year (according to AccuWeather, it was about 26°C.) Due to the weather, and the hilly nature of the course, I fell a long way short of my 50 minute target, finishing in just under 56 minutes. Despite that failure, I felt I was running well, but then at the start of August another injury struck: I tripped over at work and struck my head, suffering a concussion. I eventually felt well enough to run again, and did so at the start of September, but only a few days later, I was injured once more: this time badly spraining my ankle while playing football. This time, the recovery was not so fast.

At the start of November, I began running again, tentatively doing 2 or 3 mile runs, making sure not to strain my ankle too much. I completed my first Parkrun on 9 November, and from there I kicked on. The feeling of community that I gained from running the Parkruns helped me stick to my schedule through the week, and between November and December, I ran over 108 miles: easily the most I have ever ran in two months. At the end of December, I ran the Stoke Stampede, and on a nice course managed to finish in 47:23, well under the 50 minutes I had targeted.

So in summary, I failed to run 365 miles: I finished with 236 for the year, mainly thanks to those last two months. I did manage a sub-50 minute 10 km, but the injuries meant that I couldn’t even consider a half-marathon.

Now, it seems time to pick some targets for the coming year: they will look very similar!

  1. Run 500 miles in total across the year
  2. Run a sub-45 minute 10 km race
  3. Run a half-marathon (I’ve already registered for the Silverstone Half – more about that later)

Wish me luck!

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